‘Douching’, which means to wash or soak in French, usually refers to cleaning out the vagina with a fluid such as water mixed with vinegar, iodine or baking soda. Whilst douching in the UK is less popular than in the USA, where an estimated 20 to 40% of American women douche regularly, there are still people out there who douche due to a misplaced belief that it removes the risk of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs).
Douching can change the delicate balance of vaginal flora and acidity which may result in a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis; if subject to douching again the bacteria causing the infection can be pushed into the uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries. This can cause scarring and inflammation, which may reduce fertility and cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.
If you are worried you may have an STI (whether or not douching was your prevention method), Better2Know is here to help. We can get you an appointment quickly, at one of our private clinics across the UK, and your results will be with you in one to five days from when the sample is received at the laboratory. The sooner you get tested, the sooner you can receive treatment for any STIs you may have.